Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Bah. Humbug. Part 1

The Olympics: people from countries you never heard of competing in sports you never heard of. Amateurs who will make more money if they win a medal than all the nurses in your local hospital put together.

Already the Opening Ceremonies have produced their first scandal: It seems the little girl who sang "The People Hail the Rice Harvest" or whatever it's called wasn't really singing. She mouthed the words while the world heard the voice of another little girl who wasn't cute enough to represent the People's Republic. Not since Milli Vanilli have I been so disillusioned.

I guess it's early days, but beach volleyball is not a sport, it's a beer-fueled spring break activity. Swimming, on the other hand, is just plain scary. The suits are scary. The reptilian goggles are scary. The female swimmers are especially scary, with their Schwarzenegger shoulders and their weirdly square faces. I guess if you follow competitive swimming, Michael Phelps is as well know to you as Tom Cruise is to the rest of the world. Phelps is attempting to win more gold medals than Mark Spitz (seven), so this is really really exciting. And in case you think all he does is dress up scary and splash about in chlorinated water, NBC keeps posting his grueling daily schedule: breakfast, workout, team meeting, press conference, workout, take bus to pool, etc. In other words, it's just like having a job. Speaking of jobs, Mark Spitz is now a dentist. So there's a swimmer for you.

I'll be posting updates whenever I can be bothered to. Don't expect anything over the weekend, when Turner Classic has back-to-back Fred Astaire and Gene Kelly days.

Question: If the air in Beijing is so foul, and the heat and humidity so punishing, and money was clearly no object, why didn't they build a roof on the Bird's Nest?



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